Message from the Director

‌Thank you for your interest in the St. Kate’s – St. Thomas MSW!

Building on the unique strengths of the St. Kate's - St. Thomas School of Social Work, our exclusive focus on clinical social work practice for the past 25+ years ensures our graduates are exceptionally prepared for clinical practice. An unrivaled regional network comprised of 20+ full-time clinical social work faculty members, over 200 field education partners, and over 2000 clinically-prepared MSW alumni support our students.

Embracing a broad definition of clinical social work practice, the St. Kate's - St. Thomas MSW is appropriate for those seeking to practice direct psychotherapy and counseling with individuals, families and groups, as well as for those who wish to employ a fully informed, diagnostic lens to serve the bio-psycho-social-spiritual needs of their clients. Building on core social work concepts (ecological systems theory, person in the environment, and strengths perspectives), our graduates are prepared to:

  • Think critically and diagnostically
  • Develop and implement clinical interventions
  • Evaluate relevant client outcomes
  • Work in multiple settings
  • Engage with diverse populations
  • Integrate a macro perspective in clinical work with individuals, families and small groups

Click here for a description of the St. Kate's - St. Thomas MSW in clinical social work practice mission and goals.

Our program is committed to superior clinical social work education. Our field placement process and training of field supervisors are nationally recognized. In our program, MSW students complete 600 hours in a clinical field placement; 39 credits of advanced clinical coursework; and a clinical research project in collaboration with a doctoral faculty advisor and committee members who bring the perspective of community practitioners. The clinical research projects provide students with real-world research and program evaluation experience and prepare graduates to contribute meaningfully to the social work profession. Graduates of our program have pass rates on the Association of Social Work Board (ASWB) master’s-level licensure exam well-above the national average. The curriculum is also in-line with the knowledge requirements for clinical licensure (the LICSW) in Minnesota, with students graduating on-track to meet the required 360 clinical knowledge area clock hours required for clinical license eligibility.

A distinguishing characteristic of the profession is the variety of practice areas in which clinical social workers are found. Clinical social workers are trained to work with diverse populations and have the flexibility to move between client populations and practice areas throughout their careers.  Our MSW students may choose to develop a specific area of clinical focus through the integration of their elective courses with their clinical field practicum and their clinical research paper. In addition, we now have three Area of Emphasis Scholars programs focused on critical and emerging specializations: Gero Practice, Military Practice, and Practice with Immigrants and Refugees.

We look forward to working with you as you explore a career in clinical social work practice!